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Mayors somewhat optimistic following Toronto meetings

By Tim Davidson Dec 7, 2023 | 1:15 PM

Mayor Jack Harrison is working to lower policing costs for families in Dryden.

OPP costs in Kenora and Dryden are expected to rise by almost a million dollars each next year.

That was the main reason for a meeting between mayors of the two communities and the Solicitor General.

Kenora mayor Andrew Poirier says they didn’t come away with more money but is confident there is a long term solution.

“They are working on something right now, not just for Kenora, but I think for the whole funding formula,” said Poirier after his meetings last week.

“So they are looking at something, working through other avenues.  We’re hoping that’s something a little more permanent.”

Poirier says he and Dryden Mayor Jack Harrison are looking for some relief for their communities.

“Obviously any assistance we get from the Solicitor General’s office would be welcome news.  I’m hoping we will get something.”

Last year the province provided the City of Kenora $500,000 to help offset the high cost of policing.

Poirier and Harrison also met with the Minister of Long Term Care and his staff last week  in Toronto.

Poirier says they want residents living the Unincorporated  Areas to pay their fair share for the Kenora District Homes for the Aged.

“We have numbers that we provided to them.  If we follow a certain mechanism to implement something, we showed what those savings would be for all of the municipalities.  We did share that in confidence.  I was asked to keep that in confidence for now.”

Currently he says the Unincorporated Areas don’t pay anything.

The meeting were in part organized by Kenora-Rainy River MPP  Greg Rickford.